Outreach Continues Following Deadly Perry County Tornado

March 2, 2017 (STL.News) Efforts continue to help the victims recover from Tuesday night’s deadly tornado in Perry County, Missouri.

Governor Eric Greitens toured the storm damage on Wednesday.  Following the tour, Greitens posted a message on his Facebook page:

You can look at a situation like this and see people who suffered, people who have lost everything.  And the damage from this tornado was real and serious.  We can’t ignore that, and we will do what is in our power to help these communities rebuild.

But what we also saw was a resilient community.  We saw neighbors helping each other, comforting one another, and beginning to put things back together.  Out of our suffering can come strength—and the people of Perryville are setting an example for all Missourians about how this community and this state stands strong in the face of disaster and difficulty.

The devastation has prompted a strong response of help throughout the state, with volunteering efforts and donations.

The St. Louis Archdiocese is among those reaching out to help the tornado victims.  Archbishop Robert Carlson released a statement offering prayers and support for those impacted by the storm:

We mourn for those who lost their lives and the families now grieving a lost loved one.  We know that many homes full of memories, photos, and heirlooms have been lost and destroyed.  The livelihood of many people will be dramatically impacted for the foreseeable future.

The people of Perry County and the surrounding area need our help and support.  Catholic Charities of St. Louis and our parishes in the area are currently assessing damage and coordinating a disaster relief assistance effort.  We will work closely with all agencies and authorities in the coming days, weeks, and months to help restore lives and livelihoods.

Those most impacted by the weather will be recovering for days, weeks, and months.  It is my pledge that the Catholic Church will continue serving those in the impacted areas until the needs are met.  This is our responsibility as Catholics.

Carlson added that tornado victims may contact Catholic Charities for assistance at at ccstl.org or by calling 314.367.5500.

Volunteers have also been in Perry County cleaning up debris, providing laundry services, and helping with displaced animals.

The National Weather Service reports that preliminary findings show an F3 tornado hit Perry County Tuesday night.  An official label for the tornado is pending the National Weather Service’s final report.